Expert NFL Betting Advice: Best Backup QB Situations
Given how many college football teams there are, and the fact that all of them have quarterbacks, it should be far less difficult than it appears to be to find competent backup quarterbacks in the NFL. Heck, a lot of teams can't even find competent starters. The better a backup situation is, the less risk there is of a real collapse when a starter goes down, and the easier a team is to trust for bettors. I don't see a lot of value in ranking all of the backup QB situations in the league - it's too arbitrary and subjective, especially in the middle of the pack. But there are a few teams that really stand out for their backup strength, in my eyes, and a couple of those fly well under the radar. Here, in no particular order, are seven backup QB situations I really quite like:
Philadelphia: We don't need to spend much time here. When their starter was injured en route to what very easily could have been an MVP season, their backup came in and was named Super Bowl MVP. And both are back. Things aren't perfect here - Nick Foles has had a rough camp here, Carson Wentz has to come back from a knee injury, and the potential for a distracting conflict certainly exists. But we know this is a better situation than many primarily because it has already been proven to be.
Arizona: This could be a surprising inclusion for many - it's not like Arizona is going to be anything close to a real contender this year. But for an also-ran team they have a pretty solid QB room. Josh Rosen was drafted to be their QB of the future, and he will get that opportunity as soon as he proves himself ready for it. But in Sam Bradford they have a fully capable guy to fill in as needed, and if they choose to keep Mike Glennon around they have another guy with starting experience as well. Having a guy with massive upside, and real options backing him up, is more than a lot of teams have right now.
Pittsburgh: Landry Jones is a guy who can step in and competently replace Ben Roethlisberger when needed. We know that because he has done it. And Mason Rudolph has the upside to be the eventual starter for this team - something Jones will likely never threaten to be. With a clear No. 1 who has a history of injuries and isn't getting any younger or easier on his body, having competent options behind him is crucial - especially if you want to be a contender. The Steelers have an elite QB at the helm of an elite offense and also decent insurance policies.
Minnesota: The Vikings made a huge splash landing Kirk Cousins this offseason, but they didn't stop there. They added Trevor Siemian as their backup as well. Siemian did not really look like a starter in his time in Denver - not consistently, anyway. But having a reasonably young backup who already has 24 games of NFL experience is a real luxury. Like Pittsburgh, Minnesota is a team intending to compete right now, and having the insurance if their starter falls is a big part of that.
Atlanta: Matt Schaub is old and not particularly inspiring, but he has been competent in this league - more than that at times - and he knows the offense well. He isn't going to push or threaten Matt Ryan, but if he was called on then he could be relied upon to be ready and to minimize mistakes. You could certainly get worse in this league.
Detroit: Another one that could be a surprise for some, but I like the duo here. Jake Rudock is a guy who has quietly established himself as a backup in this league, and there is definite upside there - as he proved in his one year at Michigan where he took huge steps forward from his time at Iowa. If called upon, he could be ready. And Matt Cassel, like Schaub, is an older guy who won't inspire but who has seen it all and can be relied upon to minimize mistakes. On a team with upside, and with a QB who largely doesn't get hurt, this is a pretty solid scenario.
Tennessee: Blaine Gabbert was not worth the Top 10 pick that was spent on him, but he has experience in the league and has some skills. And Luke Falk was a serious steal in the draft. Marcus Mariota is clearly and obviously the answer here, but if he is hurt again then things could probably be worse. Quite a bit worse, actually.
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